Sunday, January 10, 2010

Comment #7 -- Do the Right Thing

Last blog comment of the semester! Wheeee! Like the Memento thread, I'd like for this one to be more conversational, with comments building off each other. Your assignment is to address something from the L.A. Times oral history of the film that we read in class today. If you'd like to revisit it, here's a link to the article.

Due Wednesday before class.


67 comments:

Kyle Y said...

Ah it feels good to regain my title. One thing that I found interesting about this article was how angry everyone seemed to be about not winning the award for best picture. It seems that everyone, especially Spike Lee, has something bad to say that attempts to undermine "Driving Miss Daisy". Personally I have never seen this movie but if it won best picture it can't be all that bad. While many of them attempt to preface their attacks with a sly kind word or too, such as when Aiello stated "I love Denzel Washington", they also pass this movie off as simple child's play compared to "Do the Right Thing." Everyone seems to be holding a grudge 20 years later like they were cheated out of the award and still can't figure out why they didn't get it. I just found this very interesting.

Kyle Y
2nd hour

Matt H. said...

I think its interesting that Spike Lee tried to get Robert De Niro, and Matt Dillon to play parts in the movie. Another comment I found interesting, about the award for best picture was when Danny Aiello said that they would've won best picture had it not been for Spike Lee's press conference about Malcom X. That is quite a statement and now I wanna see that press conference. It might be just me, but it seems that Spike Lee and Aiello have a "love hate" relationship. They disagreed on the arguement of whether Sal was racist or not, and Sal is chirping behind Spikes back about not winning best picture. Overall, I doubt there is any difference there because Spike really liked Aiello as Sal

Joe said...

Matt I agree with you about everything except for when you say that Aiello is chirping behind Lee's back that he is angry that they didnt get best picture. It isn't Lee's fault that they didnt win; the voters choose the winner and they didn't choose "Do the Right Thing." Aiello shouldnt be getting mad at Lee but instead the voters.

Joe S.
6th Hour

- Carter said...

I thought it was interesting that Lee was criticized for showing a "drug-free" neighborhood in an area where drugs were clearly a problem. I agree that it was an intelligent move on Lee's part to not show the influence of drugs on such a community, considering how much that would distract from the movies initial focus on race. Yet the fact that it was necessary to clean the original neighborhood demonstrates that drugs have a direct effect on the condition of that community. What I thought was even more interesting was that Lee had to rely on the Nation of Islam's security force to clean the neighborhood.
- Carter G
hour 4

jessy said...

After reading the article I found it surprising all the comments on the main topic, race. Like with the actress that played Tina, she received alot of criticism for how she was portrayed. The Latin community was very unhappy with the fact that she was a single mother (pregnant from a black man) and how thick her accent was. I was also saddened that critics and audiences were more concerned with the fact that Sal's Famous was burned to the ground and almost didn't seem to care that Radio Raheem was killed in the whole ordeal. i couldn't believe that it wasn't even mentioned or questioned in any part of the interview. All that was ever talked about was the "loss of property".

Jessy R
2nd hour

Isaac said...

Something that I thought was interesting in the article was the fact that the actor who played Pino got the role after Spike Lee saw him in a film beating a baby penguin to death. I think this shows how Lee had in mind just the kind of character he was looking for in Pino before filming even began.
Isaac S.
6th hour

French Toast said...

I to found it really interesting that many critics took the side of Sal, and as Lee said pitied the loss of property more than the loss of a person. I side more with Lee in the fact that property can be rebuild, but a life can't be resurrected. Also in this statement, I think that Lee takes a side with Radio Raheem and therefore says that Mookie does the right thing by throwing the trash can through the window.

Tommy D
1st Hour

Sam said...

Upon reading the article, I believe that many of the actors may seem cocky about their performance/role. Especially Spike Lee. I would say this impression could be easily misunderstood for a strong sense of pride in their work. Obviously a few are bitter, but who wouldn't be? A certain quote by Lee says that he got over it and moved on. I feel the responses from the actors are in some way instigated by the questions that must have been asked.
I would also like to bring attention to the fact that the actor who played Buggin' Out, the most pro-black culture character in the entire movie, turns out to be half italian and half black. His background must have been confusing to his dedication to his character.
Also, Smiley was never in the script?? A vision of spike lee's mind perhaps??

Sammy S
2nd Hour

Kelsey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kelsey said...

I agree with Jessy, I'm confused as to why people are more moved by the pizzeria being burned down rather than Radio Raheem's death. Personally, I think that Radio Raheem's death is more important than a fire and a loss of property. Like Tommy said, its hard to understand why people didn't feel for Radio Raheem's life, family or friends when a building can just be rebuilt. Spike Lee seems confused by this as well, and his opinion is shown through his actions by throwing a garbage can through the window. The article was really interesting to see how each actor/actress had experienced racism throughout their life and what they each brought to this movie.

Kelsey R.
Hour 2

Claire V. said...

From this article, we see how everyones views and opinions of "Do the Right Thing" brought out the racial tension in everyone(including the cast and crew of the film). In the article, Lee says, "...But I still feel that some white moviegoers were scared to see it in theaters because they might be filled with crazy black people". I think Lee was trying to make a point to all the film critics, film audience, and the entire nation about the troubles of racism . Caucasion film viewers might be outraged by that statement that Lee spoke, but it's what a lot of movie critics did to the commentary on "Do the Right Thing". Some critics were saying this film was gonna create a riot for African American youths across the nation. In reality, all that "Do the Right thing" was have us question our nations habit for racial tension and hatred, and face that problem head on.

Claire V.
6th hour

Christopher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Christopher said...

I think that it is very interesting that the character if Smily is not in any of the scripts. Smily plays an odd role in the film. He is one of the few white people in the neighborhood and he continually steps into the story at random points until Radio Raheem and Buggin Out confront Sal. Also the ending where Smily places his picture of MLK and Malcolm X on the wall in place of Sal's Hall of Fame leads into the quotes provided to end the movie leaving us to interpret their meaning.

Chris Y.
1st hour

Ben said...

I found it interesting how Danny Aiello and Giancarlo Esposito talked to each other about their childhoods to that they could insult the other person with more meaning. Spike Lee wanted Aiello to say the "n" word but he was against it because he didn't think it would make that much of a difference. The fact that they took the take where Aiello went berserk at Ginacarlo meant that Lee got what he wanted. Even though Aiello didn't want to, it added to the film by giving it a more realistic feeling.

Ben N
1st Hour

Eva said...

I personally think that when Mookie throws the trash on Sal's, it is not only to do the right thing or not. He is expressing his feelings (anger, despair, helplessness) about Radio Raheem's death, well actually, lets use the right word: Radio Raheem's MURDER. It makes me so upset to see how careless this fact was in people's reactions when the movie came out. So, as I was saying, I think that for the first time in the movie, Mookie refuses to be the mediator as he used to be. He decides that instead, he will show who he is: and that is a man whose friend was killed in front of him by cops. He is so desperate that he needs to let the anger and the sadness out. Everyone knows that violence is sometimes an efficient and easier way to express hard feelings than words. Then, why Sal's place? Maybe because Mookie didn't forget that Sal would have died if Radio Raheem didn't instead. Maybe because he needs to find a culprit in the crowd to show him his feelings: and even if Radio Raheem showed up with the super loud music at first, Sal broke the radio. Radio Raheem is dead, so why not attack Sal? Again, I am not sure if it was the right thing to do but I am not even sure if, for Mookie, it is the question or not.

Eva C
6th hour

Tom said...

I agree with Sammy with that spike Lee comes off like he has this huge ego about how good the movie/ his role is the movie is. I feel like the better directers wouldnt make such a big deal about how good there movie is and just chalk it up to nothing thing and be like its not for anyone and let there talent as a film maker speak for its self....i do understand however why spike lee feels the need to stick up for his movie a whole lot if he feels his intention with the movie was misinterpreted and that he feels people need to realize that the real horror in this film was the police brutality but its not real far for him to pull the race card here because the whole movie he built up how inportants sals shop was and barly focused on Radio Raheem during the film...
Tom b
6 hour

matt p said...

After reading the L.A. times article the quote that really suprised me was when Lee said: "To this day, no person of color has ever asked me why Mookie threw the can through the window. The only people who ask are white." I had heard Lee say that previously and wondered myself if he had done the right thing. I feel like people of color don't have to ask this because they were defending themselves. Whites cannot relate themselves to being a minority in this country. I believe in my mind that Mookie did the right thing himself and for the neighborhood, but not necessarily for anything outside of it. Sal's Pizzeria, no matter how good it's pizza was, not only caused tensions between races but also within races.

Matt P
Hour 1

bobert599 said...

From reading this article, i was surprised at the racial tension between people. I think this movie really brought out the tension and people and spike lee were just feeding the fire. Arguing about racism will never fix it. It will just cause more tension to build up. There is a good example from the movie where Sal's pizza place is burned down. This little shop has been there all these years peacefully serving the community. But one day the racial tension is released all at once. i dont think the burning of the building did anything to help racism nor did the killing of radio whatever his name is. The main argument between critics about racism in his movie.
Bobby v
6th hour

Bonnie said...

I agree with Sammy the part in the article that surprised me the most was the part about buggin' out. I thought it was unique how lee chose a half black and half Italian to play the character that was so against whites and Italians. It must have been really difficult to get into character cause he was from such a different background.
Also the part where lee said that no body with a black background has ever asked him if Mookie did the right thing, the people who asked were always white.

Bonnie W
6th Hour

griffin said...

In the film they showed a drug free neighborhood when in reality there were drugs being used all over that neighborhood. i think that this was a very smart move on spike lees part. if that aspect of things were to be added it would make an unequal balance between different races, making it very hard to get the main point across. also, it would add another conflict, thus making it harder to concentrate more on one main point.

griffin d
2nd hr

AnnaF said...

I also was very surprised when I read that Buggin' out was both black and Italian but had to choose between one in the movie. I thought must have been a very weird thing to do and also cool to learn the different views of both. Overall I thought this article was very interesting to read and to learn about all the different things they used to create the movie and how it became a movie and everything.

-Anna F
hour 2

Josh said...

One thing that i found interesting was how spike lee commented on how only the white people asked him why mookie threw the garbage can through the window. this is interesting because the whole film is based on race and this, even 20 years later, is still a question dealing with races. the blacks didn't ask because they knew mookie threw it to save sal because he was in grave danger and the whites saw it as a riot starter so again the blacks and whites have conflicting views. the whites say mookie didn't do the right thing but the blacks think otherwise because he saved Sal.

Josh W
hour 2

Jack said...

I have also found it interesting the critics sided with Sal. To me it seems that a loss of life is greater then burning down a building mainly becuse you can't replace the loss of life. Overall Mookie to me did all the right this and may have possible saved the lives of Sal and his sons.

Jack S
1st hour

Taylor said...

"Kilik: He absolutely did the right thing because, whether consciously or not, he directed the anger away from Sal and his sons. He probably saved their lives."
I also thought that this was a very interesting point that I had never thought of before. It was evident that the people of the neighborhood were extremely upset over Radio Raheem's death and it seemed they were bound to channel these feelings/energy somewhere in the end. No one was looking upon Sal and his sons favorably at that point-quite the opposite-so they could've ended up hurt (or dead) if they'd been the ones where the fiery energy was channeled towards. I'm not saying that Mookie's actions were without some consequence (for Sal, because he didn't have his pizzeria anymore), but if Sal were to weigh the situation on the matter of "what if" regarding what COULD have happened, he may feel a bit differently about how things went down.

Taylor T
Hour 1

Danny said...

I disagree with the critics siding with sal. I think that Mookie saved the lives of sal and his sons because he threw the trash can into the window of sals pizzeria to distract the crowds attention from them towards the pizzeria. I believe Mookie made all the right decisions in the split seconds he had to think.

Danny T.
Hour 1

Greg Yessam said...

Like Matt p i found the quote "To this day, no person of color has ever asked me why Mookie threw the can through the window. The only people who ask are white." I found this interesting because I feel like this in itself shows racism that Lee tries to expose. He makes it sound like black people are angry at Sal and therefor Mookie bringing the mob to attack Sal's was obviously the right thing. But at the same time Lee views his breaking of the window as diffently:
"He absolutely did the right thing because, whether consciously or not, he directed the anger away from Sal and his sons. He probably saved their lives."

greg massey
2nd

Chris said...

Regardless of weather or not Mookie did the right thing, Spike Lee clearly says that "That's up to the audience." This is phenomenal concept because it leaves the film up for interpretation and will help it to remain timeless (even if it didn't nab the Best Picture prize in '89). I enjoyed reading the stories in Lee's casting of the characters; it's interesting that most of them grew up in urban settings and were immersed in African American culture alongside their own. Danny Aiello grew up in a black neighborhood and was accustomed with using the "n" word. It is cool to learn that the confrontation scene with Buggin' Out was a legit argument; that words like "Guinea" and other racial stereotypes really hurt. On a side note, the actors Robert DeNiro and Matt Dillon would have been fantastic additions to the cast, however, Aiello and Tururro were quite good nevertheless.

Chris S
6th hour

Brett S. said...

to bulid off of what greg said, I think that Mookie definitely did the right thing. After Radio Raheem was killed by the police, Mookie saw that all of the anger was being aimed at Sal. By throwing the trash can through the window, Mookie was sort of playing both sides. He didn't tell everyone to stop entirely and hold in their anger and at the same time he distracted everyone from hurting sal, causing more violence.

Brett S.
2nd hour

tayis said...

i don't think when mookie say that only white are the ones who ask him why he threw the can i don't think that was racist just because if he didnt do that something worse could have happened to sal and sons and i think burning down the pizzeria is better than having all those three guys dead.
tayis L
6 hr

Jennifer said...

I thought it was cool that a few of the characters acting in this movie could actually relate to there pasts . The characters that could relate to themselves made this movie interesting because its like they basically portraying there true selves. For example Ruby Dee (mother sister) got to play a part in the film of being one the women who watched out of her window observing the actions that went on on the streets. When she was young she was the child being watched. Also John Turturro (pino) grew up in a place where there were more blacks than whites so he was able to really relate to how the whites acted towards the blacks and how the blacks acted toward the whites.

Nicole G said...

When reading through the L.A. Times article I was surprised to read that Danny (Sal) initially refused to say the 'n word,' but when aggravated enough, exclaimed the word without thinking. First, this shows me that Danny most likely did not agree with much of what was being depicted throughout the movie in terms of race. I'm positive that he disagreed with the treatment of blacks in the film, as well as how racist some of the white characters were shown to be. Secondly, this quote confuses me greatly due to the fact that Danny refused to say the word initially because he had never said it before and would feel uncomfortable saying it, but also because when provoked, his immediate defense mechanism was to use the 'n word' against whomever he was speaking to.

Nicole G
Hour 1

PAIGE! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PAIGE! said...

In the L.A Times articel about "Do the Right Thing", i thought it was interesting how all of the people that helped out with the film had their own idea of weather or not Mookie did the right thing. When asked about it, Kilik states "He absolutely did the right thing because, whether consciously or not, he directed the anger away from Sal and his sons. He probably saved their lives". I personally disagree with this statement because i think that Mookie could have found a better way to draw the attention off of Sal and his sons, if that was what he was attempting to do in the first place.

Paige B.
Hr 2

Kevinb said...

Kevin B
Hour 1

I agree with Matt H, it is really interesting that Aiello would say that because it is a pretty wild comment. Even though I haven't seen the press conference I would guess there is definitely some merit to his statement. I really loved "Do the Right Thing" because of its complex ethical choices. It allows you to examine both the characters and yourself, and I think that is the best part of the film. However, when Spike Lee talks about it he completely steamrolls over the complex ideas and instead just tells you what is right. Its like because he made the film he is automatically right, but that's not the case at all. When a film has that big of an impact it becomes part of the culture and is now owned by the populace. It is not Spike Lee's place to decide what's right and wrong, instead he should present the issue and step back.

Zander said...

I believe that Mookie did end up doing the right thing by throwing the trash can through the window, but as far as doing the right thing throughout the whole movie, I disagree. Just about every time that he had to deliver a pizza, Mookie ended up getting side tracked and took a real long time to get back. Sal could have easily fired him for being so lazy, but knew Mookies circumstances and kept him working. This brings up the other point whether or not Sal is a racist. If Sal was racist, he would have fired Mookie a long time ago, he also makes the comment that, "people have grown up on my pizza". He has gotten to know people and become friends with the people that live in teh neighborhood.
Zander Hour 2

Tom said...

On what Carter said, I like that Spike didn't use drugs as a theme or even a side plot in this movie, even though they were a very large problem. But cleaning up the neighborhood was a necessity, and the reason for the Fruit of Islam is because 1. As stated in the article the people in the Bed-Stuy dont respond well to police or white people and 2. I dont think a bunch of actors can fend of crack heads.... so they needed tough guys that can intimidate people.

Arman S. said...

I agree 100% with Matt's idea that Spike Lee and Aeillo have a true love hate relationship. In my opinion, Spike Lee is a very liberal and outright man, who won't settle for much less than his own point. His point, for the most part (in my opinion) is correct, but he still needs to calm himself at times and have respect for the way others think. In Do the Right thing, had De Niro and Dillon played parts, the film truly wouldn't have been the same. It was the racial difference with Sal and Spike himself that brought the majority of the tension, and De Niro is too well known to play a role there, because myself, and many others i'm sure wouldn't be able to take him totally seriously.

Hamish said...

I thought that Mookie did the right thing for the wrong reason at the end of the film. At first I immediately thought that he did the wrong thing, but after thinking about it, I bought the idea that he pretty much saved Sal's life. If he wouldn't have shifted the anger from Sal to his shop, Sal very well could have been killed. However, I believed he did it out of anger, not to save Sal. I also thought it was outrageous when Mookie went to Sal to collect his pay, that was a low blow and pretty much put an end to their friendship.

Olivia said...

I agree with carter that it seemed odd that Lee was critisezed for portraying a drug free neighborhood in a fictional film. Yes, in real life this meighborhood is overrun with drugs, but this is a story not a biopic, and it seemed to confirm all that Spike Lee was saying about kind of overgeneralizing racist remartks when people would say that the neighborhodd of Bedford Stuy was portrayed incorrectly just because of a drug problem.

Tom.o said...

I liked how it seemed like everyone was really friendly with eachother. You could tell that they all loved working together. It likely would have been a completely different movie had they not enjoyed being with eachother. They didn't let any of the issues that dealt with the movie get in-between them, they all worked together to present those issues to the world.Personally I also enjoy knowing that the actors in the movie work well together and appreciate eachother. Otherwise the wole movie seems like it was made purely for money and not to make a point or to make art

Trace said...

I found it very interesting that some of the statements from the actors clashed with statements from Spike Lee. For example, Lee talks about telling a young woman (Rosie Perez), to stop dancing on the speaker because if she fell and was injured, he could be sued. Perez tells another side of the story and says she wasn't dancing on the speaker, she went up there to yell at some other women to stop degrading themselves by holding a who has the biggest butt contest. Another example of this would be Aeillo and Lee talking about Sal's use of the N word.
After reading the article, it almost seemed as though Lee was attempting to talk for all the actors just assuming they all agree with him. I also noticed how he continues to note (not just in the article) that no colored person has ever asked him why Mookie threw the garbage can at the window. This makes me view him as more of an arrogant person than I may have initially thought.

Trace Brandt Hour 6

J Jesperson said...

I think that it is very interesting that the character Smily is not in any of the scripts. Smily plays an o role in the film. He is one of the few white people the neighborhood and he continually steps into t story at random points until Radio Raheem and Buggin Out confront Sal. Also the ending where Smily places his picture of MLK and Malcolm X on wall in place of Sal's Hall of Fame leads into the quotes provided to end the movie leaving us to interpret their meaning.

Quinn said...

I thought it was interesting how all of these people had differing opinions of what happened during the shoot. Spike Lee and Danny Aiello both argue about his willingness to use racial slurs. or when spike lee argues with Rosie Perez about how he found her at a party. It would seem that the movie had some controversy even in the filming process.

Quinn D.
2nd hour

megumi said...

The part I thought was interesting was the people who was in the movie was very upset about the fact they did not Win any awards. I feel like what spike lee said in the documentary and what they discussed in the article did not match that well. Also I feel like sal should not be the person who played in the movie. He looked like he was too nice to play it.

Meg k. 1st hour

Hunter Carrico said...

I agree with Kyle when he said that everyone was mad about how the people involved with “do the right thing” kind of talk trash about “driving miss daisy”. I felt that everyone that was quoted from the article at one time in it said that they were upset that they did not win the award for best picture, but I think that it was a normal reaction to losing such a big award. One thing in the article that I also noticed was that almost everyone agreed that Mookie did the right thing, and I also agree that he did because instead of letting everyone try and attack sal and his sons he took the focus from them to the building. In my opinion, I was blown away when it was sal in the end who got in a fight with Radio Raheem because to me he was always trying to influence Pino to like and befriend the black neighborhood. It seemed like Sal cared for everybody and that he would never do anything like that if it was not such a long hot day with lots of stress. I thought that it would have been Pino, instead of Sal, who lost it.

Erin said...

The part in that article that i thought the most interseting was when Lee said that people were more conserned about the damage of propery rather than the loss of a life. If that was my movie i would be kind of upset that the property was what god people angry. It should have been the other way around. He said something like things can be replaced while you can't bring back someone whos died. I totally agree with Lee on that comment and that was the part that stood out the most to me.

Erin S
Hour 1

Chase Nelson said...

I agree with Kyle it seems like the majority of the comments seemed to just be a rip on the winner that year and saying how do the right thng should have won. I think that although it may be true at the time it was too much for the time while the other movie was similar but was toned down.

Jcmoney said...

I thought it was a really good idea for spike to face all of the criticism of the movie because it helps to preserve the legacy of the movie. He makes a good point when he says that most critics valued white property over a black hoodlum, and therefore mookie didn't do the right thing. I think this movie showed african american feelings and will be talked about a lot in the future. John c. Hour 6

Whelch said...

we-ELL my good fellow peers.... it's all a matter of perspective, really. We can all agree irrefutably that the loss of a life is on a completely different scale than the loss of property, and even the critics (if they were asked directly) would have said so themselves. The question that I'm still failing to find an answere to is why Sal, who had just as much to do with the death of Radio Raheem as did Radio himself, or Buggin Out, is the only one 'punished' so to speak for the death. THIS is what baffles me - which indirectly leads to whether or not Mookie did the right thing. The ONLY way i can possibly see him as having done the right thing is if - had he NOT thrown the trash can through the window - Sal and his son's would have been beaten and possibly killed, otherwise, i would have to say that no, Mookie did NOT do the right thing.

-Blair P.
1st hour yo!

Patrick said...

I think, in response to the "Why didn't this film win more awards" questions / comments, that maybe too many people didn't know what to think of the movie at the time, so they didn't really know that it was so influential.

Pat D
6th Hour

Boone said...

On the topic of the film losing out to Driving Miss Daisy for best picture, I think it's pretty possible, given some of the comments/accusations spike lee made in the article and in the clip we watched in class, that Danny Aiello was correct in saying his press conference ruined the films Oscar chances. I also agree with Matt when he says that it seems like Lee and Aiello have something of a love hate relationship, because it seems like this isn't the only instance of them disagreeing over a major part of the film, whether or not Sal is racist for example.

burton146clash said...

Smiley was probably the best character especially because he wasn't even in the script. I kinda feel bad for laughing at him and when everyone was just kind of rude to him. One thing I thought was pretty odd was how they lost to Driven Miss Daisy. that movie i thought wasn't very good.

Alex Abernethy

Molly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lucy said...

I agree with Welch that the loss of life doesn't always trump the loss of property. Spike called Radio Raheem a deliquent himself. I almost laughed out loud when Lee said that he couldn't believe that white viewers in particular thought that the death of Radio, was a worse act than Sal's property distruction. I think the United State's court system would beg to differ. Radio was up to no good and just wanted to stir up trouble, and not to mention was trying to kill Sal himself. And don't we put people to the death sentence for that in some states in this country anyway? Of course it was wrong for Radio Raheem to get killed the way he did, but he was also at fault for many things and could have gotten just as bad a sentence for killing Sal had he succeeded and gone to court. So sorry, I didn't think it was very sad when Radio died, and I felt really bad for Sal. Not because he was white. But because he was a nice guy that just wanted people to respect him and his business and he tried to get along with everyone. It's not a race thing. It's an ethics thing. I felt worse for Sal because he was generally a better person than Radio. End of story.

Molly said...

like that in the interview, there are a lot of different sides to the how people perceive the ending of the film, and claiming that Mookie either did or didn't do the right thing. I think it helped me to better understand why Spike Lee did what he did in terms of writing the film. However, I don't agree with him about the ending, I think he is a bit of a hypocrite, saying that only white people commented on how they thought the ending was unjust with the burning of Sal's pizzeria. Yet, it seems as though Spike Lee had a favoritism of black people, and white people were basically all racist just because they were white, and I can really sense that he himself is a racist against whites, based on the various interviews and the way the film is portrayed

Molly E.
1st Hour

Lucy said...

last comment was Lucy R. Hour 2

Maria said...

I disagreed with most of the critics in this article for a few reasons. I disagree with then that the burning down of Sal's store was worse than Radio's death; although I think that the burning down of the store was completely unnecessary for the people in the neighborhood to do, Radio's death is still a more pressing issue. I also disagree that it was a poor movie for leaving out the drug problem mainly since the movie is not about portraying a drug problem but rather a racism problem. For these reasons and others, I mainly disagree with the critics in the article.

Maria B
1st hour

cj duffey said...

I agree with chris and about 50% with sammy. like spike lee said it up to the audience if he did the right thing or not. Buggin out could just said we want black people on the wall with out yelling and swearing he just loses his point and it seems there just yelling. But i see both sides of spike lee and sal when mookie say raido r die and sal seeing his place buring i can see both side of there storys. so did Mookie do the right thing? the world may never know.

Lauren said...

I think it was really irritating to read in this article that white folks had the nerve to ask why Mookie threw the trash can in the window yet, they totally ignore the fact that an innocent man died for no reason. I find it hard to comprehend that people could overlook this so easily. Many great things arent't appreciated at the time they are created but can have an impact on society that wasn't always clear to us.

Lauren D.
Hour 6

Andrew D said...

I thought that "Do the Right Thing" has a good point to make, that racism is everywhere and isn't going to vanish in a second. This article mentions how the film is based on a real incident that occurred in a Brooklyn neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant. It is pretty well accurate about how scenario like this might happen. The way the action unfolds is believable. I like the way he portrayed the characters so they come to life. I thought the ending where Mookie thought that the killing of Radio Aheem was wrong, and unjustified, so he threw the garbage can through the window of Sal's Pizzaria. Lee was a talented director, as the article says, because of the way he put this movie together. It is entertaining and still makes points about what is the right thing to do. There were lots of racists in it, especially Sal's older son and the police. Almost all the characters have some racist feelings towards some group. Lee seems to say that nothing can be done to completely get rid of racism, but people should try to fight it and "Do the Right Thing."


Andrew D 6th hour

Brianna Y. said...

I agree completely with Chris on this. Lee said that "It's up to the audience" to decide whether or not Mookie did the right thing. People have gone on for years debating this, and will continue to do so. This is the great part about the movie.

Brianna Y
6th hour

richard bacon said...

I find it kind of awkward it was filmed in Brooklyn Bedstuy neighborhood with one of the most drugged corrupted violent neighborhood. Yet, Spike Lee in my eyes and opinion made it cleaner than it seem than it is real life not because the Islamic force cleaned it. Because, it seem more comic relief and some innuendos. Yet people were freaking out about it. Maybe it showed Racially diverse neighborhoods could never be peaceful utopia or we can't stop racism. Overall Robert De Niro did a good job playing a role with handling all the pressure when he didn't anything wrong. He also did good in movies like Leone and stuff.

Richard N
2nd Hour

Ross W. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ross W. said...

I found it extremely interesting that Ruby Dee, who plays Mother Sister, knew a character just like the one she plays in the movie back in Harlem. She was surprised that Spike Lee would be able to create a character like that. Spike Lee was really good about creating a diverse set of characters who all fit into their own niche. Each one seems to fulfill a certain view point of Lee's vision of Bed-Stuy. It comes together really well to create a fascinating plot with all of these characters interacting.

Ross W.
6th hour

Kelsey said...

I agree with some of the comments from the people involved about how they believed Mookie did the right thing for himself, but somethings were not right not only with Mookie but with Sal also. Smashing the radio, and throwing the trash can were both reactions to events, they seemed like the good action to do at the time, but they linked reactions to events that occured later that could have been prevented.

Kelsey D
1st Hour

skiier said...

i really liked the movie do the right thing. i like how it portrayed the different views of all the characters. i was shocked when i noticed it didnt get the best reviews because i think it was the best movie we have watched in class because it was actually in english and in color and some what of a modern movie unlike all the other ones.
nick g
hour1

Jordan said...

I didn't know that we had to do a blog comment for this movie, at all. Perhaps I was gone or just didn't hear about it, but I thought I would do one anyways now, after seeing how much my grade is suffering from it's absence, so here it goes. The movie Do the Right Thing was probably one of the most thought provoking movies that we have watched thus far in class, and it has definitely spilled over into my life outside of school through discussions with my parents about the film. The fact is, that I found myself angered by the treatment of blacks in the film, as they are portrayed as helpless victims for the most part until the very end of the movie when they overthrow Sal and his pizza shop. The white people in the movie are all portrayed in a very similar way, which is racist and unfair, with little regard towards anyone else's desires or motives. They just kind of do what they want, and are unwilling to compromise with the people around them. It was kind of ridiculous. The other thing that has really gotten to me was the last scene where they burn the whole place down, while playing the "fight the power" theme song of the movie. This scene truly showed to me at least, how far we have come as a society to rid ourselves of the racial stereotypes that once ruled us. I'm not willing to say that we have defeated race as an issue, because people still do see both black and white as two people rather than one, but the stereotypes that go along with seeing those two colors has definitely been diminished, especially due to our black president. More importantly than anything else though, I find myself marveling at Radio Raheem's character, and the way that Spike Lee is able to make him so intimidating and yet so vulnerable. Lee continually gives him low angle close-ups throughout the movie with a tilted edge to show how big and dangerous Raheem can be if necessary, but the image of him with his love-hate brass knuckles makes me see him as emotionally sound with himself, which takes away from the scary outer shell that Raheem shows to most people. Additionally, when we see Raheem talk to Mookie, his intimidation factor drops once again as it becomes easier to relate to him as he lowers his defenses a little bit. Finally, as the movie comes to a close, he is shown as much more vulnerable, since he is one man, being beaten and killed by the police force which holds much more power than he does, so it just kind of undermines all the work that Lee put in to make this scary intimidating character. That's all I have to say for now about the movie. Live long, and prosper.